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Hawaii Beat

By Star-Bulletin Staff

Wednesday, October 2, 2002



Rainbow Wahine’s
Willoughby bothered
by muscle spasms


Hawaii outside hitter Kim Willoughby could miss the Rainbow Wahine's volleyball match against Louisiana Tech on Saturday.

The All-American practiced Monday, but sat out yesterday's session because of lower back muscle spasms.

Hawaii coach Dave Shoji said that doctors want Willoughby to rest for a week. Shoji isn't sure if the junior will play this weekend.

"She might come in tomorrow and say I'm fine," he said. "She had some of this last week."

The last time Willoughby missed a start was during the 2000 season when she injured her left ankle. She played in every match last year and missed only two of Hawaii's 120 games.

Meanwhile, middle blocker Maja Gustin could be closer to getting back on the court. Gustin has been out of the lineup for a month since being diagnosed with a stress fracture in her left foot.

Wahine trainer Renae Shigemura said Gustin will undergo another X-ray this week, but it is Gustin who will be the best indicator of whether she can play.

"We'll use Maja's pain as an indication of where she's at," Shigemura said. "We want to see her in limited action. She's starting to run in the pool this week. And next week, she'll try light jogging."

Nichols switches to Ko Olina

Greg Nichols, head pro at Waialae Country Club, has been named the new Director of Golf Operations and General Manager of the Ko Olina Golf Club at Ko Olina Resort & Marina effective next Jan. 1.

Nichols, a veteran of Hawaii's golf industry for over 25 years, will be responsible for the direction and implementation of all aspects of the Ko Olina Golf Club.

"I am thrilled to be part of the Ko Olina Resort & Marina and the Ko Olina Golf Club," says Nichols. "With the rapid growth and development at the resort and the importance of the golf club to the resort community, there is no doubt the position will be both challenging and exciting. I am really looking forward to it."

Nichols has received numerous awards, including PGA Golf Professional of the Year (1990) and the PGA Horton Smith Award (1989, 2001). In Rob Sandler's "Legends of Hawaii Golf, the First Century," Nichols was cited as one of the legendary golf pros who helped influence Hawaii's golf industry.

Irons and Robb advance to third round

Hawaii surfers Andy Irons and Kalani Robb won first-round heats yesterday in the Quiksilver Pro France at Hossegor, France.

Shane Dorian of Hawaii placed third in his heat and moved on to the second round.

Brigham Young-Hawaii stays at No. 2 in poll

Brigham Young-Hawaii (12-0)remained at No. 2 in the AVCA Division II Coaches Top 25 Poll.

The Seasiders got one more first-place vote and five more points than last week. They still trail No. 1 Cal State San Bernardino (14-0) by 24 points.

Bettman compliments Islanders owner Wang

UNIONDALE, N.Y. >> When NHL commissioner Gary Bettman ventured out to Long Island for an 11 a.m. exhibition game, he saw something that would've seemed impossible not too long ago.

The seats at Nassau Coliseum were filled, with thousands of young hockey fans supporting the once-dormant New York Islanders.

Gone are the days of failed ownerships of the franchise that once ruled the NHL with four straight Stanley Cups from 1980-83. Charles Wang and Sanjay Kumar are beginning their third season running the Islanders, a team that made the playoffs last season for the first time since 1994.

Wang also owns the Hawaiian Islanders of arenafootball2 along with his daughter, Kimberly, who is in charge of day-to-day operations.

"Long Island has always been great for hockey," Bettman said yesterday during New York's 5-2 victory over the New Jersey Devils. "What this franchise needed was new ownership, and we couldn't have done any better than Charles and Sanjay.

"Their commitment to hockey, to the Islanders and to Long Island is what's made this situation work."

Yesterday, all 16,234 tickets were given out by the Islanders to school children in grades 3-8.

Wang has enjoyed his time with the team, and still has visions of a new home for the club. It just might take some time.

"We are going through an economic crisis now," he said yesterday. "It's something that we eventually will get to. I'm sure we'll build a new arena.

"Meanwhile, even if we don't put a shovel into the ground for four or five years, we still have to make this a comfortable place, a place that people want to take their families to, and put a good, competitive product on the ice. And we're doing that."

High winds scrap America's Cup racing

AUCKLAND, New Zealand >> High winds forced a postponement of America's Cup racing today, a day after all three American boats won to start yachting's premier event.

Winds averaging 25 to 33 knots forced the races on the Hauraki Gulf to be abandoned minutes before their scheduled start. Racing cannot begin with winds of less than 7 knots or more than 19.

U.S. men unbeaten in world volleyball

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina >> The United States beat Venezuela 3-0 last night to complete the first round unbeaten in the World Volleyball Championships.

The Americans won 26-24, 25-18, 33-31 to finish play in Group E and will next face powerful Yugoslavia.



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